One Year In!
One Year in!
This month I was able to celebrate one year working at Canterbury Tech. It’s been an amazing year with so much to celebrate for our small but mighty team.
In the last 6 months we have seen the fruits of our hard work with an enviable 12% increase in memberships and that continues to grow month on month. This means there are always new and widening networks of technology people to meet and connect with at our events.
Here’s a breakdown of what we’ve been up to:
We’ve increased the frequency of our events and have been building on our Tech Tuesday brand by delivering events on multiple Tuesdays in a month both in person, online. We also added a second large event, the Tech Week Hub to our annual schedule. The Hub had 25 rolling events over 5 days and we were able to deliver it free for our members.
We upgraded our newsletter in October to great feedback and that has given us a format to share more member moments, technology news and we were able to launch a new blog section to highlight our member’s expertise and views. If you are a company member then feel free to submit your blog through the easy to use form.
We’ve been able to add some great opportunities for members such as free entry to 5 days of events at the Tech Week Hub to add to the most incredibly priced tech summit tickets. We do this all with the support of Sponsors and Supporters. Giving back to our members community really does benefit everyone!
We have deepened our partnerships and collaboration with key city partners like ChristchurchNZ, Christchurch City Council Smart Cities, Aerospace New Zealand and national partners like NZ Tech and Te Matarau – the Maori tech association bringing great coordination to our efforts including launching a national “Innovate Otautahi” brand for attracting national and international guests to our region for our events.
Behind the Scenes
Behind the scenes we have implemented a new CRM and upgraded systems by adding in lots of automation for repetitive administrative tasks. This means our student membership sign up has gone from 15 days to a few minutes and we are able to manage a much higher volume of membership applications each month. We have now brought on a developer on our team to focus on some key web projects this year. We’ve simplified our website significantly and created forms to allow our community to lodge their events on our events calendar, submit blogs and add their MeetUp to the directory themselves – which has streamlined a lot for our small team.
We’ve also implemented a new service excellence strategy and looked at our where we can make the most inviting (and delicious) experience for those new to networking and the community.
We got our community of technology MeetUp organisers together and asked them what support they needed to keep up these essential groups and we were able to refresh our MeetUp pages, open our calendar up to get MeetUps to be more visible to our members and also set up a MeetUp Fund to support groups that might need operating budget or just to get off the ground.
We don’t have MeetUps for some key expertise areas such as Business Analysis, Testing, Tech sales so let us know if you are keen to organise something – there’s lots of support from the MeetUp Organiser’s group.
Women in Tech
We’ve delivered focused programs for women considering a career in Tech supporting ChristchurchNZ’s award winning PowerUp series and heard of the confidence that participants have gained and seeing a place for themselves in the industry – There’s still a bit of work to educate employer’s on the workplace conditions that make women want to stay in the industry but giving women the encouragement to get through the front door is a great start.
Supporting different thinking at work
We have been working tirelessly with NZ’s top researchers and dyslexic educators to research, design and develop a workplace dyslexia inclusion programme that is co-designed with dyslexic technology workers. I’ve personally learnt so much from this work that has actually made me challenge how we do recruitment, promote and do team management when 20% of us, across all gender and ethnicities, are dyslexic. That’s right, 1 in 5 people in your teams and your customer base are dyslexic, based on the latest research and 81% left school without knowing they were. Imagine if dyslexic people were allowed to grow to their full potential and have their needs met by our workplaces? Perhaps schools might follow suit too.
Dorenda Britten and Canterbury Tech are breaking ground in this space and looking for a programme partner who’d like to align their brand with social inclusion innovation and what could be the largest inclusion programme in New Zealand. Could this be your organisation?
The team of 5000
A massive thanks to all of you for pitching in and making our community what it is. And a special thank you to our team and volunteer committee and our Sponsors.
We’ve had some awesome times with our sponsors this year, raising their profile and having fun at the same time and we have also taken on some supporting partners to help us with their expertise to take us to the next level. We will be releasing our newly redesigned sponsorship prospectus very soon so let us know if you’d like to understand some of the new opportunities for supporting the community through Tech Week 24, Masterclass workshop series, supporting growth companies and our employer of choice options.
None of these things happen without our committed team and committee
Jen, our marketing and events manager joined the team in October and has taken our visibility and membership service to the next level and brings sunshine to our office everyday.
Alex, our tech summit manager continues to astound us with her cool composure and ability to pull off massive things without breaking a sweat. This year she helped pull together Tech Week in May and Tech Summit in September.
Jude, our developer who is helping us improve our website at light speed!
And Paula, our membership coordinator who supports us from Stratos Technology Partners has been smashing out all the new memberships we have been flowing in and enjoying some of our new automated tools that make it so much quicker.
We are here to create opportunities for our members to connect, get inspired and help our industry to grow.
We’ll be sending out our Annual Membership Survey soon ahead of the Tech Summit and we’d love to know what things are important to your business, you and your employees over the next few years.
Thanks for your warm words of support. We are planning some fresh things for 2024 and looking forward to unveiling those after Tech Summit.
Nga mihi and see you at the Summit on the 5th,